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NAACP v. Alabama: When “Transparency” Becomes Censorship

NAACP v. Alabama: When “Transparency” Becomes Censorship

In order for civic groups to be effective, Americans must be able to associate with their fellow citizens
privately. People behave differently when they are being watched, and this is especially true when people are monitored by the very government they are trying to reform. The right to privacy is therefore essential to the protection of First Amendment freedoms. To understand the vital relationship between privacy rights and freedom of association, we need only look to the landmark 1958 Supreme Court case, NAACP v. Alabama.

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Did a D.C. Federal Court Fail the “Major Purpose Test”?

Did a D.C. Federal Court Fail the “Major Purpose Test”?

A recent opinion by Judge Christopher R. Cooper of the federal District Court in Washington, D.C. poses new risks for advocacy groups and their supporters. The ruling erodes a constitutional limitation on the power of the government to compel Americans speaking about policy issues to register themselves as political committees (PACs) with the Federal Election Commission (FEC).

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First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti: Protecting the Right to Hear Others

First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti: Protecting the Right to Hear Others

Can the government silence speech about an election simply because the speaker is a corporation? Can it deny voters the opportunity to hear a corporation’s views on issues? Forty years ago, the Supreme Court answered no in First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti.

Read More v. Federal Election Commission: Protecting the First Amendment Rights of Americans v. Federal Election Commission: Protecting the First Amendment Rights of Americans

If one person can speak about a candidate without limit, can Congress ban two, three, or hundreds of people from joining together to do the same? That was the simple question presented in the case v. Federal Election Commission. Fortunately, a unanimous 2010 D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals decision said no, such a limit would violate the First Amendment. Americans can now form independent expenditure groups to raise and spend money on campaign speech without limits. Learn more about this important case.

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Understanding Super PACs

Understanding Super PACs

You’ve probably heard the term tossed around over the past couple of years, but what exactly is a “super PAC”? These organizations have been given a bad name by their competitors – powerful politicians and media corporations – who previously held a monopoly on political speech. However, the reality is much different than what opponents of free speech would have you believe. Check out the Institute’s newest infographic to understand what super PACs are really about.

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Latest Updates

2018 May Be the Year of the Political Outsider, No Thanks to Campaign Finance “Reform”

IFS Praises IRS Reforms to Protect Donor Information

Washington Examiner: FEC ‘compromise’ could threaten free speech online (In the News)

Puget Sound Business Journal: Opinion: Google’s political ad ban gives incumbents a big boost (In the News)

The Intercept: Brett Kavanaugh, Who Has Ruled Against Campaign Finance Regulations, Could Bring an Avalanche of Big Money to Elections (In the News)

PR Watch: Democrats Reintroduce DISCLOSE Act to Combat Dark Money “Poison” (In the News)

Capital Research Center: Required Donor Disclosure: A Threat to the First Amendment (In the News)

SCOTUSblog: Reactions to the Kavanaugh nomination (In the News)

Ballot Access News: Judge Brett Kavanaugh, Chosen for U.S. Supreme Court, has Sparse but Bad Record on Voting Rights (In the News)

Statement on Nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh for Supreme Court

St. Augustine Record: Limit campaign donations: Do you agree or not? (In the News)

Another Upstart Challenger Defeats a Drastically Better-Funded Opponent

Overlawyered: Awaiting a Supreme Court nominee (In the News)

Concurring Opinions: FAN 195.1 (First Amendment News) Institute for Free Speech Releases the Free Speech Records of Judges on Trump’s Short List (In the News)

First Amendment Watch: Institute For Free Speech Releases Free Speech Records For Trump’s Potential SCOTUS Nominees (In the News)

Red Meat Radio: Rebel Yell: Of Founders, Dark Money, And Private Association (Smith, Fox) (In the News)

Part IV: Judge Brett Kavanaugh Authors Pro-Speech Dissents in Two Communications Act Cases

Part III: Judge Brett Kavanaugh Joins Pro-Speech Opinion Upholding Rights of Protesters

Part II: More on Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s Campaign Finance Opinions

The Free Speech Record of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, Part I

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